Patricia Wanja Kimani, a Kenyan domestic worker who cried out for help last month has finally returned home from Saudi Arabia.
Wanja, who was stuck in the Gulf nation for three months, released a video pleading with the government and well-wishers to rescue her from her beastly employer, who mistreated her and denied her food.
The 25-year-old mother of two, aged 7 and 2, traveled to Saudi Arabia on March 8th, 2021, through Maharan Human Resources Company, a Nairobi-based recruitment agency.
Upon landing there, the recruitment agents confiscated her passport before sending her to work for a family.
Wanja said her suffering started on her first day at work as the employer insulted her for allegedly damaging a vacuum cleaner. She was asked to pay for the damaged equipment whose cost is more than her salary.
“I have been overworked and underfed. In more than one instance I’ve worked for 20 hours non-stop,” Wanja lamented.
She was also ailing but her employer declined to take her to hospital and instead forced her to continue working.
Attempts to get help from supervisors at her agency fell on deaf ears and the office cut communication with her.
“I have grown so weak but I keep working because I don’t want to go back to the office. The supervisor told us that whoever complains becomes imprisoned. I kept quiet about a lot of things because I didn’t want to risk imprisonment in a place where our girls have been disappearing mysteriously!” she said in the video.
The broker who facilitated her travel to Saudi Arabia said she has to persevere for six months failure to which she would have to refund Sh200,000 to the agency.
Wanja jetted back to the country last week and was happy to reunite with her children, who have been under the care of her aunt.
“I’m the product of the efforts of so many people and that’s why I don’t take it for granted. That’s why I am so happy now,” she told NTV in an interview.
“We say we want to try our luck and everything but I would not encourage anyone to go [to Saudi Arabia] because it is a gamble that would end with the loss of life.”